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Mich. congressman ends Republican presidential bid

Rep McCotter waits on stage before formally announcing his bid for the 2012 U.S. presidential race, in Whitmore Lake
Rep McCotter waits on stage before formally announcing his bid for the 2012 U.S. presidential race, in Whitmore Lake

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congressman Thaddeus McCotter ended his longshot bid for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination on Thursday, and said he would throw his support behind former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.

McCotter formally launched his campaign in early July but had trouble getting attention and was denied a place in the nationally televised debates among Republicans vying to challenge Democratic President Barack Obama next year.

The Michigan congressman told The Detroit News he was leaving the presidential race and likely will run again for the House seat he has held since 2003.

When he announced his presidential bid at a rock festival outside Detroit, the guitar-playing McCotter, 46, said he would be the voice of a new generation of conservatives.

He campaigned on a platform of dramatically reforming the government's Social Security pension system and a tougher approach to dealings with China.

(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle, editing by Todd Eastham)

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